February 19, 2019

Columbus Sunrise Rotary Provides Mobile Therapy Kits

Columbus Sunrise Rotary Club’s District Grant equipped Centerstone’s mental health clinicians with key resources needed to provide effective treatment to at-risk children.  Centerstone is a not-for-profit health care organization dedicated to delivering care that changes people’s lives.  The $2,800 grant, matched by the club, provided eight mobile play therapy kits for clinicians to use when treating children and their families. The use of therapeutic games, books and toys breaks down barriers and enables the therapist to build a trusting relationship.

Sunrise members visited Centerstone to assemble the therapy kits.  Each kit contained over 50 items ranging from coloring books and crayons to a furnished doll house.  After learning about the impact and importance of play therapy items, members decided to do more than purchase and pack the therapy kits. The club decided to meet monthly with teens attending the Thursday Depression Group to offer friendship and support.  In December 2018, Sunrise members hosted a Christmas Party with gifts, games and Pizza.  Rotarians and teens had a wonderful time together!

Therapy kits are in constant use at school sites and during home and office visits.   All Bartholomew County schools have at least one clinician embedded within the school.  Therapy kits, labelled with Sunrise Rotary’s name and logo, are in permanent and frequent use at school sites.   Clinicians enjoy having a variety of therapeutic items immediately on-hand to meet the individual treatment needs of each client.

Some of the feedback from the clinicians include that the kits contain some great resources to use with clients.  One of the most helpful items is the “temper tamer” playing cards. The temper tamer activity provides a way to better understand frustration and/or how to effectively manage those thoughts and feelings more effectively. The activity allowed for more interaction rather than a discussion-only format session.  In addition, they have found kids more engaged and open in sessions since utilizing the play therapy kit.  They have also used the teen kit for middle and high school students.  The games help to build rapport, the books help them to understand concepts such as feelings better, and the toys help them to feel more at ease and open.  It also gives them an opportunity to express what they have experienced through play.  In addition, items such as the self-harm cards and mindfulness cards have provided a more relaxed way to introduce various interventions and coping skills.

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